Eviction and the reproduction of urban poverty

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433 Scopus citations


Combining statistical and ethnographic analyses, this article explores the prevalence and ramifications of eviction in the lives of the urban poor. A quantitative analysis of administrative and survey data finds that eviction is commonplace in inner-city black neighborhoods and that women from those neighborhoods are evicted at significantly higher rates than men. A qualitative analysis of ethnographic data based on fieldwork among evicted tenants and their landlords reveals multiple mechanisms propelling this discrepancy. In poor black neighborhoods, eviction is to women what incarceration is to men: a typical but severely consequential occurrence contributing to the reproduction of urban poverty.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)88-133
Number of pages46
JournalAmerican Journal of Sociology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2012
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science


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